“Something socially not talked about- A taboo”
Islington CAMHS held a young people’s workshop about the stigma of mental health.
Young people said that the stigma attached to mental health comes from the fact that many people do not understand it, which ‘makes people think there is something wrong with the person’, ‘makes assumptions about them’ and makes people ‘nudge each other or point’. They also suggested that negative stereotypes shown in the media contribute to this stigma.
How can the stigma of mental health be reduced?
Young people talked about the importance of “Campaigns”, for example ‘We still need to talk’, Mental health awareness week, posters and television documentaries, for example the recent BBC3 series ‘Don’t call me crazy’. Some interesting organisations working to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination are Time to change and Rethink.
The young people also felt that education is important in decreasing stigma, suggesting school workshops, presentations and PSHE classes as possible ways to do this.They also thought that there should be education to show that mental health difficulties are very common and should not be discriminated against. Young people argued that campaigns should have ‘sharp slogans’, for example ‘the more you laugh the more someone hides.’ Stem4 is a particularly interesting project, which arranges conferences in schools where young people can come together to discuss issues surrounding mental health.
The young people also discussed how inviting outside speakers who had experienced their own mental health difficulties into schools could be very helpful in decreasing stigma.
Young people said that they would advise others experiencing mental health difficulties to talk, so that they can see that ‘they’re not the only one’.
What have we done at Islington CAMHS to reduce the stigma of mental health?
– Workshops to help reduce the stigma of mental health
– This webpage
If you have any other suggestions how we could continue to do this please post to our online suggestion box and let us know.
Other Useful Links
“We still need to talk” report